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Small Cabin Forum / General Forum / Non electric heater fan opinions
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dixie53
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 13:23
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Has anyone used the small fans that sit on top of a woodburning stove, they use the heat to turn a fan to circulate air. It looked like a good idea to try till I saw the price. Do they work well? are they worth the money?

drb777
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 13:57 - Edited by: drb777
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I have and use the gas stove model and yes they work and are virtually silent, (& pricy). But actually it can't even approach the effectiveness of a ceiling fan, at least in my cabin application. With a high ceiling and loft, you'll need more power to keep the heat close to even.
But they are rather entertaining.

ICC
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 14:21
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Yes, I think they are an interesting curiosity, but not all that useful.

dixie53
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 14:23
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Is there a difference between a gas and wood fire ones?

Ontario lakeside
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 14:25
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We have one. it was about $100 It does work but the effect is small. The great thing about them is they run continuously as long as the stove is hot.

drb777
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 14:25
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Quoting: dixie53
Is there a difference between a gas and wood fire ones?

Apparently so, it's called the GS model.

NorthRick
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 14:35
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Quoting: Ontario lakeside
We have one. it was about $100 It does work but the effect is small. The great thing about them is they run continuously as long as the stove is hot.


Our experience as well. It moves some air but it ain't blowing your hair back. Any electric fan will easily out do it.

FishHog
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 16:58
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I love mine, the hotter it gets the faster it spins. If you have a baffle on top of your woodstove it won't get all that hot. Mine is a simple cast iron stove and it gets a decent amount of air moving. Great for circulating heat around the building, or into a bedroom. Point it toward wet clothes hanging to dry.

I think they are great, since they are free to operate.

AKfisher
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 17:07
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We have two on our wood stove. We are off grid, they are nice to have. They move some heat around, we point one towards the bedroom and one towards the opposite loft. Or we turn thme towards the wet clothes hanging. Quiet, powerless, mindless and not too terribly expensive.

From Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01CD2AIV8/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UT F8&psc=1

Nobadays
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 17:24
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We have one as well and like it.... same sort of unit as AKfisher has. I know ours is a cheap Chinese model. Ours probably has about 6 months worth of operation on it... actually sitting on the stove turning. Got to the cabin yesterday afternoon and as soon as the fire got hot, away it went again. You can buy expensive ones through - off-grid/green goods/alternative stores, and I usually opt for high quality over cheap stuff, but for the price of the quality ones (likely built in the same factories) I can buy 3 these.

cspot
Member
# Posted: 11 Dec 2019 17:40
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They don't move a ton of air, but I can tell a difference in our cabin with using it. It heats up quicker and keeps the cabin a more even heat.

Brettny
Member
# Posted: 12 Dec 2019 05:53
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I heat with wood as my primary heat in my full time home. I can tell you that trying to blow the hot air away from the stove is useless. Your just making hot air cold by blowing it through a fan.

Put a small fan in the cold part of the room/house blowing the cold air to the stove. This removes the coldest air from that area and it's replaced with the warm air that's already at the ceiling. This method works well in doorways too.

Aklogcabin
Member
# Posted: 12 Dec 2019 10:46
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We have one that was given to me buy a friend. Was around a 500 buck unit if I remember. When I checked it out on net. It spins the fan is about all I can say. That and it takes up a lot of room on the stovetop. I would not buy one.

FishHog
Member
# Posted: 12 Dec 2019 12:30
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I'm really surprised you guys don't like these things. Mine will easily blow a match out from a couple feet away if its hot and spinning well. On a cool fire next to nothing. But trying to warm the place up it keeps air circulating enough to keep the place a much more uniform temp or direct hot air where I need/want it.

I guess if your woodstove isn't burning hot, there is little point, but if you have a good fire going and can boil water in a pot on your stove like I do, they circulate a good amount of air.

exup
Member
# Posted: 1 Feb 2020 21:57
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I have a cheap Chinese one as well...does very little. With that said I’d hate to go without it.

Biggest thing I notice, getting home to a frozen cabin and pointing the fan toward my sitting chair makes a decent difference with me warming up quicker.

shingobeek
Member
# Posted: 4 Feb 2020 21:54
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exup, you and I both....it heats me up a bit while waiting in the cold for the place to heat up.....then to blow a little air around.

Whiskerbiscuit
Member
# Posted: 5 Feb 2020 12:14
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I've had several different models of these....in my experience they work great for the first year or so, and then gradually crap out and spin slower and slower. Apparently a common cause is the conductive paste dries out in between the thermo-electric module and the metal heatsink part, and you can restore the function sometimes by applying new thermal paste (the same thing you use on a computer CPU heatsink)....but it didn't work in my case. Maybe the more expensive (+$200) models would have a longer life.

FishHog
Member
# Posted: 5 Feb 2020 12:24
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Mine has been going strong for 19 years

gcrank1
Member
# Posted: 31 Dec 2020 00:35 - Edited by: gcrank1
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I know the title is 'non-elec' but fwiw, I use some small 12v batteries and older jump-start packs as portable (cheap) power supplies. And with a small inverter I can have 110vac for low draw stuff too.
I got to play around with fans before we got snowed out.
The ceiling fan (off solar/12v bat-bank inverted psw 110) is good once in a while when the heat is stacked up top but too much for long.
The 12vdc 14"? box fan (home built in a 110 fan grilled box that the motor died) is two speed and on low works pretty well off a portable 12v battery.
The smaller, cheap, 110vac or 12vdc clamp-on type portables arent bad either, though a bit noisy (they are cheap after all). Again, run the 110 off inverter and portable battery or the 12v right off the battery.
But my fave so far has been the little usb powered fan, runs on any usb std port, low draw, moves just enough air in our 16x24 to distribute to all corners and is quiet.
Mine came with a small solar panel that hardly makes it spin but plugged into a jump pac cig-port usb adapter it is good to go. Cheap on Amazon.

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